I’m 75, divorced, and dating another woman for three weeks. She appeared worn, but still acceptable... until now.
I decided it was time to propose, so I did what was custom in my culture and presented her with a bag of carrots at her doorstep.
When she opened the door, she looked better than usual, so I told her so. Then I handed the bag of carrots. She said she didn’t want them and that I smelled of alcohol.
I did have bourbon drinks before I left to pick her up. But I drink bourbon before all my dates. She told me to go home.
Rejection is very unkind in my culture, but I wanted to give her another chance. After three bourbon drinks, I drove to her office and again presented her with the carrots. She yelled and cursed that she didn’t want to see me again.
I dumped all the carrots on her desk, cursed her, and left.
She was probably a disgraceful woman, but I might love her too. What should I do?
A woman who isn’t from your background would have NO idea that your carrots carried a symbolic meaning.
Even through “Google” it takes a determined search to discover that carrots have SPECIAL conjugal meanings particularly for people of Vietnamese culture… notably virility, as well as abundance and good luck.
Moreover, few modern women will consider marriage proposals within three weeks of dating, particularly from someone pumped on alcohol.
You’ve blown it with this woman… but you admittedly weren’t that keen on her, just with the idea of having a wife.
Get to know a woman longer and explain your cultural touchstones… IF you share mutual feelings.
I’ve been estranged from my family since my father’s death seven years ago. I was tired of my family's position of, “You call us, or you visit us.” I can't accept doing all the work of trying to have them in my life.
My logical side knows I don't need toxic people who make me feel like dirt. But another side wants family.
I wrote my mother saying exactly what I’d like from her and got a guilt trip in return. My siblings are content to live as if I’m not even around.
If I were to marry or have a child, I’m sure they’d then feel they have a right to be in my life.
Should I feel like crap just for the sake of having family? If I get married or have children, should I let them in and forget the past? If they confront me, how do I move past it all?
They’re clearly self-absorbed people, but your decision rests with whether they’re still as “toxic” to you as you felt in the past. And, with life experience and confidence in your own choices, would you still react to them the same way?
Your feeling of being treated “like dirt” needs to be probed for you to get past it. A process of professional therapy can help you explore what made you feel that way before, and what’s different today that can lift you above the old reactions.
You can then decide whether to try to develop a fresh relationship, or whether they’re still harmful to your well being.
If the latter, accept your own decision to stay estranged. BUT, if you’re unsure, it’s worth making some effort… not for the image of having family, but whether you can find some occasional connection with them.
My fiancé and I had given our final numbers to our wedding venue but later learned that one person isn't coming.
We checked, and she’d clearly marked the reply card, “Accepts.” I talked to my mother to confirm that this woman’s definitely not attending. Is there anything we should do about this change?
I know she’s from a well-to-do family so it’s unlikely the expense that’s holding her back.
How should we proceed with this person? What’s the etiquette if other people simply fail to attend?
Bride & Groom
People experienced with catered events estimate that up to ten per cent of expected guests end up not attending, due to sudden illness or last-minute circumstances.
If plans change ahead, the hosts should be given notice. Outright “No-Shows” are plain rude unless they later explain themselves.
Meanwhile, alert the venue immediately, and see if the caterer will consider dropping that one charge.
Tip of the day:
Cultural symbols for romance and marriage must be explained in order to bring the desired response.